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Second-hand Ripper Sounds Terrible: Help/Advice Needed

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by PinkBall, Dec 28, 2017.

  1. PinkBall


    Jun 29, 2017

    Hey talkbass, I'm hoping you guys can help me out with a situation I have. I was lucky enough to receive a Gibson L9-S Ripper bass this Christmas. I gleefully plugged the bass into my Sunn 300t and Ampeg 2x15 only to find a muddy mess to come out of it. I knew that the bass didnt have the original pots and there were flatwound strings on it but there was almost no midrange or treble to be found. it didnt sound nearly as good as i had expected an old gibson to be and the only things i can imagine that would cause it to sound so drastically different are A: it needs new pickups/roundwound strings or B: the pots and electronics have been so altered that it resulted in this mess. If anyone has any thoughts on what I should do to make some improvements to it please respond. Thanks!

    Edit: The pot changes from what i can tell are the bridge pickup, the neck pickup, and then both at the same time
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  2. Garret Graves

    Garret Graves website- ggravesmusic.com Gold Supporting Member

    May 20, 2010
    Arcadia, Ca
    First up, no doubt- new strings- rounds if you use them!
    Then you’ll get a better idea of what is going on with the electronics! It is possible to have strings that are so dead and lifeless, that you are masking what is happening with the pots
    Big Shrek and PinkBall like this.
  3. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Bingo. Put on whatever strings you usually use on other basses and then you can do an apples to apples comparison.

    New strings first!
    Big Shrek and PinkBall like this.
  4. s_wood

    s_wood Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2003
    Delaware (USA)
    I’ve been a Ripper owner for decades. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that unless you are going for a dub/reggae tone you’ve got to use roundwounds on them to make them come alive. Don’t assume anything is wrong with it unless you’ve tried roundwounds. And don’t change the pickups. Doing so will destroy the resale value, and if you can’t get into the Ripper with its original pickups the best thing to do is to sell it and find something that works for you.
    grrg63, MEKer and Garret Graves like this.
  5. Pbassmanca

    Pbassmanca In the pocket n' thumpy. So woody, so greasy...

    Ok....but how does she look? :smug:
  6. Yeah, someone's been messing with that one. Any of you guys wonder where the 4-way rotary switch went? Probably where that white-tipped switch is sitting? Or is it there and I just don't see it. I don't remember my Ripper with a pickup selector switch.
    Big Shrek and PinkBall like this.
  7. PinkBall


    Jun 29, 2017
    thanks man. you probably just saved me $300 dollars. Ill get some strings tomorrow and see how it goes
    Garret Graves likes this.
  8. PinkBall


    Jun 29, 2017
    see because ive heard only good things about rippers and i was surprised that i was this disappointed. good to hear from someone who has used these for a while
  9. PinkBall


    Jun 29, 2017
    yeah its where the white switch is. honestly unsure why they changed it since the 4 way wouldve given more tonal options. i guess its just a cosmetic thing
  10. PinkBall


    Jun 29, 2017
    its pretty sexy so that helps lol
  11. The bass looks OK, but your pic-taking skills are in need of help...
    there's so much wrong with that pic that it'd make a photojournalist cry.

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